07 Oct 2018

Hopes high, on the morning of Sunday 7th October when the chimes strike 10 o'clock in the Tecnopolis Table Tennis Arena, play in the Buenos Aires 2018 Youth Olympic Games begins. Two players with the very highest hopes will be in action, Japan’s Tomokazu Harimoto and Miu Hirano, the top seeds in the respective Men’s Singles and Women’s Singles event.

Tomokazu Harimoto starts his quest for honour by confronting Australia’s Ben Gould, the no.18 seed; for Miu Hirano the opponent is Nadezhda Bogdanova of Belarus, the no.20 seed.

by Ian Marshall, Editor

Throughout in both the Men’s Singles and Women’s Singles events, matches are best of seven games, eight groups of four players in the preliminary stage, players finishing in first and second places progress to the main draw.

Soon after in the Men’s Singles event Kanak Jha of the United States, the no.2 seed, faces Austria’s Maciej Kolodziejczyk, the no.17 seed; Sweden’s Truls Moregard, the no.3 seed, opposes the host nation’s Martin Bentancor.

They will be followed by Chinese Taipei’s Lin Yun-Ju, the no.4 seed, who starts his quest by confronting Russia’s Vladimir Sidorenko, the no.19 seed, in what is a most intriguing group. Also present is Thailand’s Yanapong Panagitgun, the no.13 seed but the member of the group to note, the player who could upset the pecking order is Korea Republic’s Cho Daeseong. He is the no.29 seed, a ranking that belies his ability; earlier this year he was a Men’s Singles semi-finalist at the 2018 ITTF Challenge Series Polish Open.

Lin Yun-Ju must beware but it is his compatriot, Su Pei-Ling, the no.3 seed in the Women’s Singles event, who faces an even sterner task.

In her opening contest, she confronts Azerbaijan’s Ning Jing, the no.18 seed, the player who, at the two most recent editions of the European Youth Championships, has won the Junior Girls’ Singles title. Next in line, later in the day Su Pei-Ling confronts Romania’s Andreea Dragoman, the no.13 seed and runner up last month at the Europe Youth Top Ten.

On the first day of play in the Women’s Singles event, of the leading names Su Pei-Ling faces the toughest task; that is not to imply that others, who may be considered favourites for a podium finish, do not have to be on their mettle.

China’s Sun Yingsha, the no.2 seed, opens her itinerary by opposing the Czech Republic’s Zdena Blaskova, the no.17 seed; meanwhile, Puerto Rico’s Adriana Diaz, the no.4 seed, starts her quest against Italy’s Jamila Laurenti, the no.19 seed.

Play in the initial stage of proceedings concludes on Monday 8th October.

Buenos Aires 2018 Youth Olympic Games Tomokazu Harimoto Miu Hirano

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Day 9 - Buenos Aires 2018 Youth Olympic Games